MONROE, La.(KNOE) - Primary Health Services Center hosting its eighth annual Juneteenth unity parade and celebration on Saturday.
Pucci Green and his students perform at Saturday's Juneteenth celebration. / Source: KNOE
Marie Brown, with PHSC, knows the importance of remembering the day.
"I need children to hear the beat again," Brown says.
It’s a celebration of freedom. That day, June 19, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, with news the slaves were free.
Jakesti Rush says it’s a great time for everyone to get together.
"It's all about the community and coming together for all the kids to have a good time. That's what it's about," Rush says.
A good time and a history lesson, more than 150 years later.
Abriona Kirt says this history lesson needs to be taught.
"There's some of us here that really did not know the history," Kirt says.
Because of that, Juneteenth is a day of passion for Marie Brown. It's why she spends each year teaching people about it.
"We know everybody else history and I need our people to know our history," Brown says. "Know your history. Know our history, and then this way, we can find a way to unite and everybody just feel proud of who they are."
While remembering the past, this day also gives the community a chance to come together as one, creating a family atmosphere while tying together the past and present.
Herb Pucci Green and his students also came to teach their own history lesson on African music.
“The drum is symbolic of movement and timing,” Green says. "We were at the grassroots of it, just making sure the art transcends generations. The Mende people developed the Djembe drum as a way to motivate people, as a means of motivation while they were working."
Green says every aspect of history needs to be remembered.
"It's vitally important to preserve our history, our African history, our African American history, because it is significant to where we are right now and where we are trying to go."